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Local Entertainment

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

When a movie is titled "Dinner for Schmucks," it had better have some redeeming qualities.

Use of the word Schmuck, long considered a derogatory word on the order of "the N word," might not have passed muster for a movie title a few decades ago.

Fortunately, "Dinner for Schmucks" passes muster. The movie is not only funny, it has a thoughtful take-away: a fool may be the wisest of all.

Thursday, August 5, 2010
JOE PLASKO/TIMES NEWS Guitarist Jake Cinninger of Umphey's McGee delivers a guitar riff onstage at Penn's Peak last year.

Leave it to Umphrey's McGee to find a way to combine football and improvisational, progressive music.

After all, the band has its roots in South Bend, Indiana, at Notre Dame, in the shadow of the Golden Dome and all that gridiron tradition.

In addition to its usually busy schedule of touring, including some of the biggest festivals in the land, the Chicago-based jam band found the time to come up with the first UMBowl on April 24 at their hometown Lincoln Hall.

Monday, August 2, 2010
RON GOWER/TIMES NEWS

Kyle Agnew of Pottstown, son of Michelle and Jon Agnew, gives a high-five to George the Bear, the official mascot of the Lehigh Gorge Scenic Railway, next to railway's souvenir car. The Agnews said Kyle loves Thomas so they brought him for a ride on the Jim Thrope train. They said they rode the train last summer and enjoyed it, so returned again this year.

Thursday, July 29, 2010
Paul Willistein/TIMES NEWS Tom Hollenbach of Salisbury Township with his 1962 Thunderbird, which will be at the 47th annual Das Awkscht Fescht, Aug. 6, 7, 8, Macungie Memorial Park, Macungie.

When Tom Hollenbach starts his 1962 Thunderbird, it really thunders.

The four-seat hardtop owned by Hollenbach and his wife, Claudia, of Salisbury Township, will be under the featured car tent at the 47th annual Das Awkscht Fescht, Aug. 6, 7, 8 in Macungie Memorial Park, Macungie.

The Hollenbachs' Thunderbird was the cover story for an issue of Thunderbird Script magazine, published by the International Thunderbird Club.

" We've had it (the Thunderbird) all over the place," Hollenbach says. "We've had it to many international shows."

Thursday, July 29, 2010
Ron Gower/TIMES NEWS The Lehighton Band, directed by Paul R. Smith, performs recently in the Lehighton Park Amphitheater. On Saturday, the band will be putting on a free concert at 7 p.m. at Mauch Chunk Lake Park.

The Lehighton Band, under the direction of Paul R. Smith, will be performing at 7 p.m. Saturday at Mauch Chunk Lake Park.

The band will present a concert of music of various styles.

The overture for the evening will be "Overture de Argentina," a very light-hearted composition that is easy to listen to.

At the other end of the spectrum, the band will play "Willy Nelson In Concert," a medley of Willy Nelson hits.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Unless you are a hard core folk music fan, the prospect of an 18 song solo acoustic guitar set can seem more daunting than fun.

Jeffrey Gaines delivered that exact type of set at his Opera House concert on Saturday.

The Harrisburg resident has been making music and touring for over 20 years. While a bad acoustic concert can lead to frantic watch-checking; the skills Gaines has gained on the road were proven by the fact that on Saturday evening he made the time fly by.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010
LINDA KOEHLER/TIMES NEWS Nicole Donatone sings old and new country favorites as opening act for Sammy Kershaw at Penn's Peak.

Opening for country star Sammy Kershaw at Penn's Peak was local songstress, Nicole Donatone and "The Who Knows Band."

She opened with a little Patsy Cline in "Write Me in Care of the Blues" and "I Fall to Pieces," followed by "I Feel Lucky," and LeAnn Rimes' "Blue." She paid tribute to country's queen, Loretta Lynn in "Coal Miner's Daughter" and belted out Miranda Lambert's "The House that Build Me" and ended with a soulful "Last Blue Moon of Kentucky."

Saturday, July 24, 2010

In writer-director Christopher Nolan's "Inception," Leonardo DiCaprio falls asleep, Joseph Gordon-Levitt falls asleep, Ellen Page falls asleep -- and I nearly fell asleep.

I can barely stay awake just thinking about "Inception" in order to finish this movie review.

"Inception" is officially the 2010 summer blockbuster season's worst movie, given its $160-million budget and advance hype. It's, arguably, the most ludicrous movie since "Dune" (1984).

It's Nolan's first original movie since his feature film debut, "Following" (1998).

Thursday, July 22, 2010
Met a star

Sydney Strubinger, 8, a second grade student at the L. B. Morris Elementary School in Jim Thorpe, gets a hug from country singer John Michael Montgomery when she attended concert at Penn's Peak in Jim Thorpe. Sydney is the granddaughter of Jim and Diane Strubinger of Jim Thorpe. She attended the show with her "grammy."

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Childhood's End, a national touring Pink Floyd tribute Band, performs at The Mauch Chunk Opera house, 14 W. Broadway, Jim Thorpe on Saturday, July 17, at 8:30 p.m.

Childhood's End is a central NY based Pink Floyd tribute band featuring over 100 years of combined experience in all facets of the business.

The current line-up of Eric Garboushian on drums, Gregory John on guitars, Jimmy Puma on bass and vocals, Tim Robinson on guitars and vocals and Steve Schad on keyboards and vocals provide a complete visual and dynamic musical performance.